Pillow, 12th - 13th century

  • Korean

Stoneware with slip and celadon glaze

  • Overall: 4 3/4 × 9 1/2 × 3 inches (12.1 × 24.1 × 7.6 cm)

Founders Society Purchase, New Endowment Fund, and Benson and Edith Ford Fund

80.39

Department

Asian Art

  • Arabesques
  • Koryo
  • Glazing (coating)
  • Underglazing
  • Clay
  • Celadon
  • Ceramic
  • Slip
  • Stoneware
  • Pillow
  • Flowers (motifs)
  • Korea
  • Lions
  • Willows

Imagine resting your head on a pillow like this one. Though made of hard ceramic, it was designed for comfort. It may have been used to keep the neck cool in the heat of summer, or to preserve the elaborate hairstyles of elite women. The lions that support this pillow are believed to offer protection—a perfect assurance for someone wanting to get some rest.

purchased from the widow of Terauchi, the 1st Governor-General of Korea; purchased by a private collector; purchased by (Mayuyama and Co., Tokyo, Japan); purchased by Matsunaga Kinenkan (Kanagawa, Japan); purchased by (Mayuyama and Co., Tokyo, Japan); 1980-present, purchase by the Detroit Institute of Arts (Detroit, Michigan, USA)

Matsunaga Catalogue, p. 210 (pl. 331). Mayuyama Seventy Years, vol. 1. Tokyo, 1976, p. 384 (pl. 1147). Dekai Toju Zenshu Collection of Worl Ceramics, vol. 8. Tokyo, 1961, no. 71. Bulletin of the DIA 59, nos. 2/3 (1981): pp. 96-100, p. 96 (ill.). Bulletin of the DIA 59, no. 4 (1981): p. 108 (ill.). An Exhibition of National Art Treasures of Korea. Exh. cat., Victoria and Albert Museum. London, 1961, no. 43 (ill.). 100 Masterworks from the Detroit Institute of Arts. New York, 1985, p. 64, p. 65 (ill.). Mitchell, S.W. "The Asian Collection at the Detroit Institute of Arts." Orientations 13, no. 5 (May 1982): pp. 14-36 (fig. 24).

Korean, Pillow, 12th - 13th century, stoneware with slip and celadon glaze. Detroit Institute of Arts, Founders Society Purchase, New Endowment Fund, and Benson and Edith Ford Fund, 80.39.